Monthly Archives: September 2009

How an atheist performs a wedding.

Here is the text of the wedding ceremony I performed last night. I’m honored to have been asked to perform the service and though I was nervous about the sections the bride and groom wanted to improvise, it went off almost perfectly. (I only lost my place in the text once). Special thanks to Luke Sollit of CalTech and Matt Strassler at Rutgers for invaluable advice where my science went wrong. I had to chop a paragraph explaining how quarks are observed because the metaphor broke down when corrected by real physicists! Also very special thanks to Leah and Katie for providing me with a superhero cape, which I wore as my robe of office when performing the ceremony. And of course, thanks to Maura and Keith for asking me to wed them in the first place!

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Run like hell.

Shortly after my bike Hell Week Coach Brian said he wanted to do the same thing with running. My heart sank – as much as I had been trying to fall in love with running, it hadn’t been happening. There was much less pain involved with each run, but I wouldn’t use the word love by a long shot. More like accepting being in a relationship with occasional domestic violence. In my case, the act of staying with it for the sake of the children had been the Ironman race. Once the kids were grown and moved out I could check myself into a shelter, change my name, and never run again. Realizing this was not the kind of relationship I wanted to be in, I had to figure out how to genuinely embrace running – for real.

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2009 Nautica Malibu Triathlon

You remember what I was saying before about being tired? Turns out sleep fixes that. Much to my surprise when I backed off training, caught up on sleep, and then ramped up again quickly I was able to have a great race. More importantly, I was able to enjoy a full weekend of racing, support my teammates and friends for their Olympic distance race on Saturday, and then set a PR on Sunday for my own race. To cap off the victory the event raised over a million dollars for Childrens Hospital Los Angeles. Personally, my friends, clients, and cohorts donated over $11,000 to my fundraising efforts making me the second highest fundraiser for the CHLA team and fifth highest overall fundraiser for the entire event!

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On devaluing

A funny thing happened on the way to Arizona. At some point doing a forty five minute workout stopped feeling like a workout. This isn’t bragging, this is a psychological problem. After a workout there are steps one must take to properly recover – rehydration and lean protein being two key needs. As I stretch myself out on this Ironman timeline 45 minutes or an hour doesn’t feel like a full workout. And so, dangerously, I don’t properly refuel or rehydrate afterwards. This has caught up with me at the wrong time – my taper week leading up to the Malibu sprint triathlon. I am exhausted, having a hard time catching up on sleep, and when I do work out the legs are sapped of strength. This isn’t how I want to feel in the days leading up to a race so for the first time I am disobeying my planned workouts and taking it easy. Honestly, I did do this to myself. I worked out three times last week at Core Performance and while it was a great experience to be back there, it was also laid over my existing higher volume training schedule. The bow on this gift box of explosives is that I’m deliriously happy to be hovering under 180lbs and so of course, I’m lowering my caloric intake to try and lose more weight while also increasing my workload. This is just plain stupid.

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